When you hire employees, you should keep in mind those investment prospectuses that entice you with a great track record yet warn, “Past performance doesn’t guarantee future performance.”
While the odds are better, your new hire may not succeed at your company just because they highlighted great accomplishments and extensive experience on their resume.
When hiring, delve deeper and explore the skills, characteristics, aptitude, and abilities rather than past accomplishments and length of experience. Your job is to look beyond the flash and find those candidates with exactly the right balance of skills and traits to succeed at your company.
Here are some things to look for, keeping in mind that they shouldn’t be assessed independently since they are often interrelated.
Are they fresh or are they stale?
Sometimes someone fresh out of school will be a better fit than someone who’s done the same job for 20 years and may not have much new to contribute. In fact, the 20-year veteran may actually only have one year of experience repeated 20 times, not 20 years of progressive experience.
You have to look closely to understand whether this is the case or not. A resume with many different kinds of experiences may actually be better, even if each isn’t obviously related to the role you are hiring for.
How much experience the candidate needs depends completely on the role and the support this person will have. If you are hiring someone into an established team, your current team composition will dictate whether you need a fresh view on the role or someone who has an extensive background.
If your new employee needs to be the subject matter expert, then steady, long-term experience may be useful, but if you are looking for innovation and new ideas, make sure this isn’t the only criteria you use when hiring.